Saturday, October 29, 2011

Infomercial Airtime Cost

Thanks for visiting the DRTV Media blog for the latest updates on infomercial airtime costs. Everyday our telephones ring with marketers looking for straight talk and information on TV and Radio airtime. We've been helping entrepreneurs, large corporate clients and product developers for almost 20 years now.

So let's talk Direct Response TV and DR Radio.

Short Form TV or DRTV:
Each year it's the same story.  Rates go down in the first quarter, and it's easy to clear. There are many opportunies with TV viewing at it's highest levels of the year (think weather).  Then rates begin inching up. Second quarter rates always jump because of the push for Spring and Summer activites.  Now I know you think the economy is bad - but you can't sell anything unless you advertise.  Check the financial news - the media conglomerates are all making money!

Long Form TV Infomercials:
A lot of marketers think this format is old school - but not the smart ones! And many companies with great products well suited for long form TV, want to test with short form to see if the investment is warranted. Not the smartest strategy either. I suggest you flip through the channels late at night or on Saturday and Sunday morning.  You will see that the format is alive, that many great products are being introduced, explained, pitched and sold. So what's happening to rates?  Long Form TV Infomercial Rates are flat! There are many opportunites here, and with a smart bulldog of a media buyer, you can make money with your product.  Remember - the more you tell, the more you sell!

Short Form Direct Response Radio:
This format works great with soft offers, dietary supplements, and lead generation. With good inbound telemarketing you can convert soft offer leads into $400 sales!  We know, because we're doing it! They key to DR Radio is finding remnant time at depressed rates.  It takes a lot of work, but it pays off for the client. For example, if a station sells "retail" time at $150 a minute - we expect to pay $25-$40 per spot. If a national radio network is selling their programming at $1000.00 per minute, we expect to pay $200.00!

Long Form Direct Response Radio:
The more you tell, the more you sell!  For nearly 20 years we've been explaining this and the smart clients make money! This is a tricky format to buy because the stations like to work long term deals.  But savvy media buyers know that a product must be tested one or two weeks at a time. We call it Direct Response for a reason.  What do these time slots cost? Anywhere from from $25 to $2500.00 per half hour.  If your product does not demand visual demonstation or could work in a talk show format, give long form radio a try.

Thanks again for visiting, and, as you can see, this blog is a lot more than just DRTV Media. I've been buying, negotiating, planning and researching media for over 30 years, and I'm happy to share my knowledge and experience with everyone interested.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Direct Response Radio Rates – DR Radio Basics

Learn all about Direct Response Radio Rates – right here! Since 1992, I have been active in the Direct Response Industry, primarily in TV. But back in the late 1970’s and 1980’s, I cut my teeth buying local spot radio across many stations and many formats. You could say – I’ve been around the block a few times. In the last several years DR Radio has grown steadily with the explosion of cell phone use. Oh my God….Just take a look around you, no one is watching the road when they drive – they are all talking, texting and searching on their mobile devices!

DR Radio or Direct Response Radio offers marketers another channel to reach customers. And radio reach is expanding with numbers starting to come in for streaming listeners who are getting radio from their computers and mobile devices. The world of media is changing and you better keep up with it.

So how does a marketer make radio work? Like DRTV, if you pay too much or your CPM (Cost Per Thousand Impressions) is too high, your offer will not pay out. A seasoned Radio Media Buyer should have a robust history of stations that can offer low remnant rates and have worked for other offers. For example, we are negotiating with several CBS owned stations in large markets. Some laugh at our offers while others have open inventory and are happy a busy DR Agency has called with advertising dollars to spend.

Some examples of some sweet local deals recently:

- Sports station playing Dodger games at $10 per 60 second spot…plus bonus spots!

- Talk station in Philly with national personality at $25 per 60 second spot.

- Classic hits station in Atlanta with huge reach at $25 per 60 second spot.

- News/talk station in top 10 DMA at $6 per spot.

- We only buy Radio Prime time – Monday-Friday 7A-7P.

- No overnights or evenings which are dead times in radio.

Remnant Radio is also available on a National basis through nationally distributed networks that carry conservative talk like Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and Laura Ingraham and music shows that appeal to different demographics like John Tesh. Buying these shows at remnant rates which can be as much as 75% lower than rate card is the way to make national radio pay off. Check back here frequently for the latest information on DRTV and DR Radio.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Infomercial Production - Long Form TV Productions

Infomercial Producer, Ron Perlstein produces affordable, award winning, telephone ringing long form infomercials, short form infomercials and offers 19 years experience in the complex world of Direct Response TV or DRTV. We believe that Direct Response Television success depends on much more than producing an infomercial: it’s all about securing the largest market share in the shortest amount of time, putting the least amount of money at risk…thus the evolution from infomercial production to infomarketing.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

DRTV Response Rates

Looking for info on DRTV Response Rates? Well, you've found straight talkers and the right place to look -- right here at the DRTV Media Blog. So guys what are you looking for - exactly? I urge you to subscribe, follow, like, etc because this blog is for you to learn the latest trends in Direct Response TV, timely updates regarding DRTV Media costs (including how to find $50 DRTV Spots) and short form and long form Direct Response Infomercial costs.

DRTV Response Rates: (The cost of short form TV advertising) Media rates across the cable network landscape are holding up and rising as large brand advertisiers have not cut back, even in slow growth 2011.  In fact, political advocacy TV advertising is on the rise, in a non national election year. Nonetheless, there are many soft spots to discover opportunites where cable networks or cable aggregaters are holding lots of unsold inventory. Your media buyer needs to be connected, smart, tough and have your allowable cost per order in mind when placing your broadcast orders. DRTV media costs must be low in order to achieve a profitable cost per order. Stay tuned here and learn how to buy 60 second national DRTV spots at $5 per spot. Up to 8 million households, prominent national networks - and these are NOT overnights - $5 DRTV Spots!

Last week we had a new client call us and ask for media rates and a test campaign while comparing us to another "marketing company." Folks - beware of any company that does not give you the rate for each spot and just gives you impressions or general information. We have seen this lately with fly by night firms offering thousands of spots as part of a "media blitz" and millions of impressions as part of the package deal for the TV Production. Professional DRTV Media Buyers and Direct Response TV Agencies show the rates and those rates are supported by invoices and affadavits from the stations with the exact same rate. We researched the so called media blitz and were able to determine that the client was paying a CPM over $28, which is more than Amercican Idol or Dancing With The Stars cost on a CPM basis. DRTV rates need to be very low to pay out.  We created a plan for that client with a CPM of $0.52 and national coverage using our vast media relationships.

Make no mistake. DRTV, Direct Response TV, and TV Infomercials are a specialty that takes experience, savvy and a hard nosed approach to media negotiations. Direct Resonse TV rates change week to week and the market changes week to week based on supply and demand and most of all performance.  Check back often if you want to learn how to lower your cost per order.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Infomercial Production and DRTV Media Agency InfoWorx Launches Pay For Results Per Inquiry Program

Advertisers and marketers can now distribute and integrate their offers and products through TV, Radio, Online, Mobile, and Print, on a pay for performance per inquiry basis with limited out of pocket investment.

BOCA RATON, FL (July 28, 2011) – Infomercial Production Company and DRTV Media Agency, InfoWorx Direct launched an innovative pay for results, per inquiry advertising program for its Direct Response marketing clients. Per inquiry advertising empowers the advertiser to dictate a fixed amount they are willing to pay for a response or an order to their offer. Direct response advertising agency, InfoWorx Direct now offers and executes pay for results programs that span all media including TV, radio, print, online, mobile, and even out of home advertising.

"Per Inquiry advertising puts total control in our client's hands and allows for growth from the ground up. They can specify how many responses or sales they want and set a price they are willing to pay for each one. This allows them to use their performance metrics to maximize the potential of their campaigns,” Ron Perlstein, Executive Producer and Media Director at InfoWorx Direct explained. "With pay for results advertising programs, there are no surprises. The client simply decides how much response they want, and the platform delivers it. The InfoWorx Direct per inquiry campaign platform includes nearly every form of direct response advertising from television to pizza boxes."

"We designate one 800-number per campaign per media outlet, and redirect the calls to the marketer's call center for accurate tracking. One spot can be marketed across multiple channels, and each spot can be linked to 6 revenue touch points.", Perlstein continued. "The beauty of a per inquiry campaign is that the client retains total control. They can set the geographic campaign, designate their Direct Response Customer demographics, and even specify call center hour restrictions. This allows them to experiment with multiple media platforms and evaluate which ones are working best for them.

Recently, InfoWorx Direct has significantly enhanced its media buying intelligence, and introduced the economy-sensitive Demo long form TV Infomercial package that enables clients to introduce and test their products for a lower-risk investment. The innovative pay for results, per inquiry advertising program is another step to improve success and increase profits for all InfoWorx direct clients.

Since 1992, direct response television agency and infomercial production company, InfoWorx Direct, has established itself as a successful, award winning infomercial producer of both short-form DRTV spots and long-form info-commercials. InfoWorx has developed the most affordable turnkey infomercial model in the industry that offers clients award winning television and radio infomercial production as well as TV and Radio infomercial media buying services. The production and media buying agency specializes in all aspects of direct response advertising services and consulting, and offers an entire turnkey solution from script to sales for DRTV clients as well as specific services including production, media buying, telemarketing management, fulfillment, and home shopping placement.

For over 19 years, InfoWorx has established itself as a pioneer in direct response TV advertising, and has generated billions of dollars of major "as seen on TV success" for clients including Ageless Male,,, Emerson Electric, InventTech, SnorEnz, Rubbermaid, and iRobot's Roomba. For additional information on InfoWorx, contact Ron Perlstein, or visit

InfoWorx Direct, LLC, is a full service direct response agency and media buying service with an evolving infomarketing business philosophy. The InfoWorx scientific approach has led to profitable results and success for established companies and newcomers alike.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Per Inquiry Radio - Cost Per Action - Direct Response Radio

There are over 10,000 commercial radio stations in the USA. Radio direct response advertising is on the rise. Think hands free cell phone use! Many stations do not sell out and accept per call or per sale advertising to fill out their inventory.

Smart direct marketers are using radio to expand their offers, test their offers, and as a standalone medium. Radio works best for lead generation or a risk free offer. One of our clients uses radio as their primary media, and has sold over 2,000,000 units of one of their popular products. Callers respond to a risk free offer and reach live agents who close the deal and upsell into continuity or a larger unit package

Payout: This is the dollar amount that the marketer pays when a call is placed and lasts for say 30 seconds. Marketers often prefer a “per sale” deal, but media outlets always prefer a “cost per call” deal since they are running the ads and generating a response. Think about it for a moment. You have a dietary supplement in skin care or men’s health. The radio station may have several offers in those categories. Which offer will generate the most revenue for the station and be the easiest sell to the station? Cost per call, of course! A smart direct response media buyer can help crunch the numbers to determine the marketer’s revenue per call. Remember, you are competing with other Per Inquiry (PI) offers, and the stations will jump on offers that give them the best revenue for their unsold inventory. Savvy direct response marketers determine a payout that is competitive in their category and costs less than the cost per call or order of their cash radio buys.

Telemarketing: Per inquiry radio advertising drives calls, and the call center or IVR must have the software and systems to track and source calls to each media outlet. Some Per Inquiry agencies may direct their own toll free numbers to point at a call center for better, more integrated tracking. If your tracking or call center is questionable, forget about per inquiry. Again, a good media buyer or per inquiry radio direct response agency will help with the setup to track the telemarketing.

Per Inquiry direct response radio advertising offers a low cost and scalable marketing strategy. Unlike TV, there is less cost in duplicating and customizing the direct response commercials for proper tracking. Check back here soon to learn more about TV Per Inquiry campaigns.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Direct Response Radio Remnant Media Tips

Direct Response Radio – this advertising medium is growing again because of the use of mobile telephones and hands free driving. Remnant radio media. There’s lots of it. There are 4781 AM radio stations in the USA and 6224 FM stations in our great country. That’s a lot of ad space to fill! And radio listening can produce telephone calls which convert at much higher rates than web hits. So get your radio offers ready!

Here are 5 tips to produce compelling and telephone ringing Direct Response Radio offers.

1. Do not write a “rip and read” commercial. Consumers have learned to tune out “noise” and cramming 70 seconds of copy into 60 seconds is “noise.”

2. Test several radio direct response offers. Direct Marketing is a science. Direct Response Radio offers marketers an inexpensive testing platform for various risk free offers.

3. Repeat the telephone number 4 times! Make sure that a customer driving a car can key in the toll free number during the spot.

4. Know your audience. Smart marketers know how to catch their best customers by targeting the offer and product to the radio format and demographics. Your product may have use for everyone 8 to 80, but there is always a skew toward men or women, young or old, or in between.

5.Direct response radio rates vary widely according to market and supply and demand. Do not pay high rates! Air your offers only on stations with low CPM’s and always ask for bonus spots. Or make sure you have a bulldog for a media buyer!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Short Form DRTV-60 Second TV Infomercials

Our clients and potential clients call with many questions. The first question is almost always about the cost of TV Infomercials or Short Form Direct Response TV. Here’s a link to one of our recent posts that may help answer some TV Infomercial Production cost questions. Infomercial TV Production costs vary widely but Short Form TV Media costs will represent the largest portion of a budget.

OK, OK, now you’ve decided that your product can work in a short TV format. Great, but how long should your TV Commercial be? 30 Seconds? 60 Seconds? 120 Seconds? 5 Minutes? Wow…..let’s see if your Short Form DRTV Infomercial guru can help!

Let’s face it media rates will drive the success or failure of your project. Unless you are deeply funded and have a long term branding strategy like a beverage company or an automotive marketer, you need frequency and immediate results and sales. Let’s take a look at the benefits of each length in Short TV Infomercials.

5 Minutes or 360 Seconds:
Pros: This format has many of the attributes of a Long Form TV Infomercial. You can tell a convincing story, include testimony that can touch emotional notes with customers, and still have enough time to pitch an irresistible offer. With this format you will have all the video assets necessary for shorter spots and interactive viewing on your web site.

Cons: The 5 minute format is in limited distribution. Most of the Discovery Networks offer them, including OWN as do many NBC Universal properties. But, there is not enough inventory for a full roll out. In addition, the short form TV media available make it difficult to fine tune your customer targeting which is a major benefit of Short Form DRTV spots.

2 Minutes or 120 Seconds:
Pros: This format is the standard for As Seen On TV product launches. There is enough time for magic product demos and the spots usually make an offer pitch for about 20 seconds and then the telephone number is pitched for 15 more seconds.

Cons: The 2 minute format is in limited distribution. There’s no chance to get your product on Lifetime or USA, for example. Most of the major cables have limited 2 minute inventory. And the rate is 400% over the 30 second rate! The world is changing and shorter spots are the trend.

1 Minute or 60 Seconds:
Pros: Goldilocks was looking for something that was “just right”. In one minute you can show negative shots, solve the problem, include multiple demonstrations and pitch a compelling offer. There’s not a second to be wasted, though. No time to say “call now” several times, no time to pitch the toll free number twice. But, nowadays 30% to 65% of the sales will come from e-commerce. Make no mistake, our world is changing, and the consumer knows that they do not have to call now. There is a lot inexpensive, cheap, if you will, media availability. Your spots can air on Lifetime or any other major cable network in a variety of distribution networks. Heck, we can get these on the air in over 27,000,000 homes for as little as $20 per spot.

Cons: You cannot waste one second or one word. If you have a high priced product, you need more time. The short form media cost is double the 30 second rate.

30 Seconds:
Pros: These spots are usually considered branding spots. However, we have been successful many times using 30’s for lead generation and a drive to the web. There is more inventory in this format at the lowest cost per spot than any other length.

Cons: You cannot sell a product directly with this length. There is just not enough time to tell the story and ask for the sale. Your messaging must be perfect and the call to action must be short.

The bottom line: In 2011 you need an integrated approach that allows the marketer to get lots of frequency with the shortest format that is feasible for your product. Please check out our earlier post regarding the benefits of Long Form TV Infomercials. Then, think about your product, your budget, and your price point.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

6 Reasons Long Form TV Infomercials Work

Here’s six reasons long form TV Infomercials give marketers and viewers alike a format that cannot be duplicated in any other way.

1. The more you tell the more you sell. A recent study shows that long form TV infomercials convert viewers into customers at better rates than shorter formats. Long form infomercial product buyers were motivated to make a purchase after an average of 2.8 exposures compared with 7.5 exposures for short form DRTV commercials.

2. Infomercial Airtime Cost and Availability. Local stations, local cable systems, satellite providers and small and large cable networks offer half hour paid programing. Rates have been flat for several quarters, while short form rates on national cable have risen over pre-recession levels. With long format TV Infomercials, marketers can find airtime for as little as $25 per half hour and high profile national airings for well under $10,000.00.

3. Call management and scheduling. Marketers know when long form infomercials will air (unlike short form schedules). Based on the cost of the airtime, reasonable estimates for call center staffing are made. This frees the marketer to work with small, sales based call centers that can truly impact conversions and upsell streams.

4. Cross platform capability. One long form TV production can give the marketer all of the video assets necessary for short form DRTV, online video ads, and point of sale videos. Testimonials can populate the official web site or multiple web sites and offer convincing sales messages and compelling emotional triggers.

5. Long Form Supports Higher Price Points. Want to sell a $200 food processor, juicer or fat free grill? Long form DRTV is the answer. Do you have fitness equipment, a business opportunity, or a DIY product? These categories and more have traditionally performed best on 30 minute long form TV infomercials.

6. Testimonials, emotional triggers, and demos. Previously, we mentioned emotional triggers produced by compelling testimonials. A long form TV infomercial can support longer testimonials – even up to a minute -- that could be heart tugging, emotion producing moments that simply cannot be achieved in a few seconds. On camera demonstrations fit the same category. Side by side demos, “torture track” demos, and kitchen demos take time that only a 30 minute show can offer.

These are just a few reasons why the long TV format means so much even today with our short attention span. Marketers should consider this format when working on new product launches or campaigns.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Media Buyers TV Report

Here is your short form DRTV, Spring, 2011 update. As many of you know, in the second quarter TV media rates often rise. And 2011 is no exception. The year started out stronger than most expected, and by late January any media buying service working with national cable networks like CNBC or Bravo found DRTV clearance getting difficult. For those of you who are new to this blog, all Direct Response TV Media is pre-emptible by higher rates.

TV media rates often increase in the second quarter and this year we have had some major consolidation in the market as the merger of Comcast and NBC Universal takes hold. Comcast, while best known as the largest cable provider in the USA, has been acquiring cable networks with content for several years. E!, Style, Golf, G4, Versus, and Sprout have all been under the Comcast brand for several years, and now those networks all come under the NBC Universal umbrella.

Car sales are up, stores like Saks who were on the brink of extinction are back, and everybody is advertising. Rates will continue to push up through April and much of May….until we reach the summer season, which always brings some relief to short form TV media rates and is the perfect time to test new offers.

Small networks with limited national distribution still offer the best opportunities for direct response television marketing. There are over 100 cable networks, giving viewers many choices to surf their TV…looking for just the right programming. Remember our advice – your media buyer better be smart.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Infomercial Media Cost - 2011 Update

Are you trying to learn about the cost of infomercials? For production costs, check out these award winning TV infomercial production packages. But remember, the production fee is a one time cost that should be amortized over the life of your direct response advertising campaign. Media costs ultimately will comprise the largest portion of your entire budget. That's why your media buyer better be smart and understand the direct response TV media market.

So here is the Ron Perlstein 2011 media cost update. The 4th quarter of 2010 finished strong with rates pushing higher in short form DRTV. Media rates during the first three weeks of January, 2011 came down about 10% from late fourth quarter and are now gradually making their way back up. January was surprisingly strong with rates on networks like CNBC and BRAVO working their way higher.

What about long form TV infomercial rates? Well, it's kind of the same story, just different reasons. Half hour paid programming rates were on the decline in 2009 and 2010. As a result, TV networks, especially Discovery owned networks have replaced infomercial airtime with programming. Discovery Health has become OWN (Oprah Winfrey Network)with no long form paid programming. Bottom line -- long form rates are firming up now, too.

DRTV media is a fluid marketplace that changes as the conditions and basic law of supply and demand change. Stay tuned for more updates as 2011 unfolds.